Home Buying in Virginia>Question Details

Melissa, Home Buyer in Virginia

What exactly does a buyers agent contract include?

Asked by Melissa, Virginia Tue Jun 14, 2011

My husband and I have been working with a real estate agent for a while now and it seems as though I've been doing all the work for her. Well here recently we talked to a contractor who said if we build a house threw him we van save 10,000 on our purchase if we don't use the agent, but the problem is we signed a buyers agent contract. I know the contract means we cant use another agent but does it also mean we can't buy threw contractor that is building the home? The closing day will be after the contract agreement ends.

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Speak with your agent and their broker. And, if need be, speak with an attorney.

As for the builder wanting to give you $10K off the price if you don't have any agent, ask yourself this...why?

Without an agent, you have no one representing you or looking out for your best interests. You not having someone in your corner who knows the ins and outs of real estate and new construction is easily worth $10K to a builder who may or may not be above board or doing the right thing.

The builder bribing you to not have an agent is like the person suing you for $300K offering to sue you for only $290K if you don't have a lawyer present.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 15, 2011
If you truly believe that the agent was not the procuring cause for the home you desire to buy and you don't feel she deserves any commission for her efforts, I would carefully examine the agreement and/or consult with an attorney before entering into contract to purchase any real property.

Most Buyer Agency Agreements will include any property which you enter into contract to purchase during the term of the agreement, whether or not the agent was the procuring cause. Even after the expiration or termination of the agreement, the broker may still be due a commission on any property the agent may have shown or described to you, until a predetermined period of time has elapsed. Many of these agreements conveniently do not include a early termination provision.

If you want to terminate the agreement, and protect yourself from any breach of contract, I would suggest sending a firm and clear letter stating that you desire to terminate the Agreement with the broker. Within the letter, request that the broker provide you a written confirmation of the termination and a complete list of all properties the agent introduced you to during the term of the Agreement.

Once you receive these documents, you may be able to go forward with purchasing any property not on the broker's listing without any commission being owed. Please be advised that this advice is based on Agreements which I have personally reviewed. Without seeing your actual Agreement, I would still recommend that you read it very carefully and/or consult with an attorney before relying on my advice.
Web Reference: http://www.pbagent.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 15, 2011
Just tell the agent you choose to no longer use their services, but I wonder why a builder would tell you you will save money by not using an agent on your side, I hope you don't become a victim of build unfair selling tactics. Not the problem, Just tell the Realtor you are working with that you are not in need of their services and that you wish to be released from the agreement, have them give you the signed agreement so that you are not held to it!
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 15, 2011
Buyer Agent contracts can be broken or terminated without much trouble. I would be more concerned with a builder that does not want you to have representation in purchasing your new home!! It is unethical for a builder to offer a discount for you NOT to use an agent. It is also most likely illegal here in VA.

If you want tp change agents shop around and hire another agent to represent you in you new home purchase, be it the new construction you mention or another resale house. It is best to be represented by an agnet that will work for your best interests.

Stan Reed, Realtor
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 15, 2011
There are different types of buyer's agency agreements the most common are binding and non-binding, both have common elements.

Essential elements to both would include an expiration, description of property sought, retainer fee (usually $0), compensation amount (usually seller pays all commission), a broker's fee, termination agreement (days to cancel agreement), protection period (say I would show you two dozen homes over the course of a month and the next weekend you walk into an open house without me and buy it, this would be covered by my protection period in a binding agreement). A non-binding simply states the agent is representing you for that particular property you are writing on at that moment, no other obligations.
Web Reference: http://www.craigfauver.com
0 votes Thank Flag Link Wed Jun 15, 2011
It is a contact between a buyer and his/her agent that outlines the commitment the buyer and the agent are making to one another. Essentially, the buyer is agreeing not to write up an offer with another agent for a given amount of time, and the agent is agreeing to diligently try and find the buyer a home that meets their needs before or until the contract expires.
0 votes Thank Flag Link Tue Jun 14, 2011
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